Scottish educations experts find five areas of improvement

Five areas for further improvement have been identified in a major report covering the whole spectrum of education in Scotland.
Inspectors said Scottish education has gone through a significant period of reformInspectors said Scottish education has gone through a significant period of reform
Inspectors said Scottish education has gone through a significant period of reform

The chief education inspector has published a review of his findings after analysing all sectors - from early years provision to adult learning - from January 2012 until June last year.

Bill Maxwell found “many strengths” across all sectors of education and examples of “outstanding and innovative practice”.

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But inspectors also concluded some key aspects of education provision and practice need to be improved.

They called for greater consistency between different schools, finding children’s attainment and achievement are too variable across different primary schools.

At secondary school level, the “quality of learning and teaching was commonly found to be too variable within schools”.

The report, entitled Quality and improvement in Scottish education 2012-2016, set out five areas where more needs to be done. They are:

n Fully exploiting the flexibility of curriculum for excellence to meet students’ needs better;

n Improving arrangements for assessing and tracking pupils’ progress;

n Maximising the contribution of partnerships with other services, parents and the wider community;

n Improving self-evaluation by students;

n Growing a stronger culture of collaboration between establishments to promote innovation, and share good practice.

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Inspectors state Scottish education has gone through a period of “very significant reform”, impacting on every part of the system during 
the period covered by the report.

At the same time, there have been “substantial constraints” on public finances, presenting challenges for the education sector, the report notes.

Strengths identified within Scotland’s education system include a “strong commitment” of leaders and staff to improving outcomes for children and young people.

Inspectors also detected a continual improvement in the quality of learning 
experiences for pupils, meaning youngsters are increasingly well motivated and engaged.

Education provision was also found to be “highly inclusive” and more young people are having a wider range of their achievements accredited through youth award schemes.

Dr Maxwell said: “Addressing these five priority areas for improvement effectively will make a decisive contribution to achieving the twin aims of excellence and equity for Scottish learners.”

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